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Iran, US Dig in With Opposite Positions on Nuclear Deal 
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, June 2017. (Creative Commons)

Iran, US Dig in With Opposite Positions on Nuclear Deal 

The United States and Iran on Sunday distanced themselves ever further from one another, continuing to sound seemingly irreconcilable declarations about a possible return to the abandoned 2015 nuclear deal. While last week Tehran’s foreign minister implied his country would be willing to roll back its uranium enrichment first, before Washington lifted sanctions, the Islamic Republic’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Sunday announced his “final and irreversible” decision to return to compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action restrictions only after US sanctions are relaxed. President Joe Biden, meanwhile, when asked in a CBS News interview if he’d be willing to take such a course, replied simply, “no.” In 2018, former President Donald Trump pulled out of the agreement reached between Tehran and the world powers, which curtailed Iran’s nuclear program in return for suspension of international sanctions. In response to Trump’s reimposition of financial punishments, Iran last year began enriching uranium to ever higher purity levels.

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